Rory McIlroy reveals the real reason why he chose to represent Ireland at Rio 2016
We owe Paul McGinley a lot of credit for Rory McIlroy's decision to represent Team Ireland at the Olympics.
When it was announced that golf would be one of the events at the 2016 Rio games, speculation began mounting over which team McIlroy would opt for. As a native of Northern Ireland, the golfer had the option of choosing either Great Britain or Ireland.
Thankfully, the Hollywood man took the green option, and he revealed how he came to that decision at a recent press conference ahead of his defence of the Wells Fargo Championship.
"Two reasons - Because of how it's being approached in golf circles, it's being played in Rio this year and Tokyo in 2020, I'm not sure if we're going to have another opportunity to win a gold medal after that, depending on what happens."
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He added that former Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley had a huge impact on his decision to choose Ireland. McIlroy also admitted that McGinley's passion inspired him to take the games seriously and try his utmost to win that coveted gold medal.
"The second thing - Paul McGinley is the Irish team captain and he is so into it. He's more into it than I am quite honestly, but because he is, I would feel like I am not only letting him down, I'd let the country down as well. Paul is a very close friend of mine and if I didn't play I'd let him down big time."
"That's why I want to go and give it my best shot. I'm going to get all my shots next week from the doctor on site at the Players (Championship), get my shots for Zika and everything else I need and go play four rounds really competitively and try to win a gold medal."